This novel was published by Alberto Moravia in 1957 with the title La ciociara (The Woman from Ciociaria) and was translated into English by Angus Davidson in 1958 with the title Two Women. Moravia had initially wanted to entitle it Lo stupro (The Rape) in reference to both an episode in the novel and the metaphorical rape of Italy caused by World War II, during which the novel takes place.
In July 1943 the Allied troops landed in Sicily instigating the fall of Mussolini, in power in Italy for twenty years. In September, a new Italian government signed the armistice with the Allied troops who had meanwhile conquered the south of Italy. German troops occupied the north and centre of the country and Italy became a battlefield for foreign armies. Until June 1944 the line that divided the
Citation: Parisi, Luciano. "La ciociara". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 15 November 2013 [https://www.litencyc.com/php/sworks.php?rec=true&UID=35008, accessed 10 December 2023.]